, attached to 1991-07-21

Review by MountainKung303

MountainKung303 4.12 Stars.

This is the second of two nights in Parksville, NY. The Giant Country Horns (GCH - Dave Grippo, Russell Remington, and Carl Gerhard) joined them for July 1991. This show was among one of the first batches of tapes that I ever collected.

A great one two punch to start the show. Cavern > Divided Sky. They play Cavern with gusto. It’s somewhat uncommon for them to start a show with this song. A clean version, as is Divided Sky. Trey was getting monster Divided sustain on his guitar for these shows. Gualah Papyrus is the third song. This show was performed while they were in the process of recording “A Picture of Nectar”, which can really be noticed in this performance of Gualah (as well as Cavern), it could have been recorded in a studio. They were new songs. For me, the first four Electra albums they released are the most unique progressive rock albums of the nineties. I also think many of the songs they do on this tour are more cut and dry renditions because of the addition of a horn ensemble. It’s a fair amount of material learn. Poor Heart is after that, followed by SOAM, also a fairly straight forward rendition. Although I keep using terms like “clean” and “straight forward”, I don’t mean it’s boring. Their playing is great! Nice piano by Page on Lizards. Next is the Landlady. This tune sounds great with the GCH! That time and once again I’m Bouncing Around The Room. A bright version with long horn notes. We are then entranced. This is one of my favorite BATR’s of all time! Then they launch into Mike’s Groove. Even if I don’t particularly feel like a Mike’s, if they start into that riff, it instantly captivates. It’s such a bad ass riff! Phish heads will know what I’m talking about. The Weekapuag Groove to close the set is freakin’ smokin’! This is one of my favorite Weekapuag’s of all time. They all nail it. “Thank you we’ll be right back, relax, go over to Maggie and get some food. Don’t go away.”

Tweezer to open the second set. This is another earlier version of a song that was recorded for Picture of Nectar. The studio version of this song is my favorite version. The best way to describe Tweezer: A launching pad. I just love it. This is a fine early incarnation of the song with an interesting horn line and solo work by GCH. A great take on I Didn’t Know follows with a quick little vacuum solo. Then they do superb versions of Runaway Jim, Lawn Boy (with great trumpet solo by “Gears” Gearhard), and Sloth. The Sloth is a favorite that has become more and more of a rarity these days. I think a lot of earlier songs (that I would love to hear at shows these days) like this have become uncommon simply because the band has amassed a massive amount of other material to play. After that is Esther. This is another one of my favorite songs. A tragedy that started quite happy when it was first written. Listen to the original version of Esther from 9/12/88 at Sam’s Tavern. I guess it just wasn’t dark enough for Trey. I’ve always felt that Phish has a colorful happy exterior, but a closer examination of their music reveals a dark side, (especially with their earlier material). Esther is a great example of this. Next we get down with the AC/DC Bag, Mike serenades us with a great version of Contact, and Tweezer is reprised with some rocking horns!

Encore 1: An early Gumbo. And Touch Me. A song specifically performed only at the GCH shows.

Encore 2: Fee and Suzy Greenberg finish the second encore. That Stevo guy throws down on a “what ever the hell you call that thing” solo during Suzy.

I think this is one of the better GCH shows. Well worth picking up.
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